jueves, 30 de septiembre de 2010

Featured Team - Commonwealth Games Book Distribution in Delhi

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martes, 28 de septiembre de 2010

Rays of The Harmonist Monthly On-line Edition

This article from the Rays of The Harmonist Monthly On-line Edition is being resent by keep_in_touch@purebhakti.tv.
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sri sri guru gauranga jayatah!

Rays of The Harmonist On-Line Edition

Year-3, Issue 9
Posted: 28 September 2010

Dedicated to
nitya-lila pravista om visnupada

Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja

Inspired by and under the guidance of

Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja

The Disposition of a Suddha-bhakta

by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada

(Portrait of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada)

Question 1: Is direct service to srila gurudeva and direct association with him particularly essential?

Answer: Definitely. It is essential to have direct communion with sri gurudeva. Those who do not wish to directly serve and associate with sri guru are bound to become beguiled. Direct communion with guru is the first step on the path of divine service. Guru is to be served in every entity. If guru is not served, no one can be truly served. I must not hear anything until I am authorized to hear it by my divine master, sri gurudeva.

Question 2: Is it our identity that we are servants of the topmost rupanuga (follower of Srila Rupa Gosvami), sri gurudeva?

Answer: Yes. Those devotees of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu who have taken shelter of madhura-rasa (the mood of transcendental amour) proudly maintain the self-conception that they are the servants of the followers of Srila Rupa Gosvami. That is, they proudly identify as the servants of the topmost rupanuga, srila gurudeva.

Question 3: What is the greatest kindness?

Answer: “May your mind become absorbed in Sri Krsna.” This type of blessing, or well-wishing, is the only beneficence upon the world. Causing the consciousness of the living beings to become fully absorbed in Sri Krsna is truly the greatest kindness. And to bestow krsna-bhakti upon all souls is undoubtedly the topmost form of altruism. A devotee’s mind is perpetually busy, solely to engender such benevolence.

To know about the Supreme Lord is the topmost knowledge. The scriptures say, “vidya bhagavatavadhi – to know God is the apex of wisdom.”

prabhu kahe, “kon vidya vidya-madhye sara?”
raya kahe, “krsna-bhakti vina vidya nahi ara”

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta (Madya-lila 8.245)

Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu asked, “Which form of knowledge and learning, amidst all knowledge, is the essence?” Sri Ramananda Raya replied, “Apart from krsna-bhakti, there is no knowledge.”

The Godless education that is being offered and assimilated nowadays does not yield any well-being for the residents of this world. On the contrary, it has produced, is now producing, and will continue to produce heavy burdens for them, and nothing else. Truly, the human race will only achieve its greatest welfare through the proliferation of Sri Caitanyadeva’s compassion.

Question 4: Whose fate is bright and favourable?

Answer: The fate, or fortune, of humans is of two types. The fate of one type of person is bleak while the fate of the other is bright. Only those whose fate is favourable and bright endeavour to engage in hari-bhajana, and they alone achieve hari-bhakti in this very lifetime. They do not have to wait for a future birth.

By taking exclusive shelter at the lotus feet of Sri Caitanyadeva, we will attain full spiritual welfare in this very lifetime. But even after taking to the path of eternal welfare, the living entity can fall down again as a result of bad association. Therefore, at every moment we must remain aloof from our covetousness of wealth, women and fame. By repeatedly hearing sermons on hari-bhakti, all forms of unfavourable thought will recede.

Question 5: Who is the most benevolent person?

Answer: The message of Sri Caitanyadeva is so true, so great, so wonderful and so magnanimous that no other subject matter can ever come close to comparing to it. Only the faithful servants of the message of Sri Caitanya, they who have denounced dharma, artha, kama and moksa (worldly righteousness, mundane prosperity, sense gratification and emancipation from suffering) are truly benevolent. Just one time, it is essential for us to reflect with an unbiased mind upon the vast intelligence, thoughtfulness and benevolence of the devotees of Gaura. “I will command others;” “let all others serve me.” May the compassion of Sri Caitanya-candra deliver me from these malevolent thoughts.

Question 6: Who should one give charity to?

Answer: If you want to offer your assistance to someone, or if you want to make donations, then, with a sense of duty, you should offer them exclusively to sri guru and the Vaisnavas. All credit is due to God-loving people alone. We should only place our faith in and serve those who are engaged in bhajana of the Supreme Lord twenty-four hours a day. We should never place our faith in those who do not engage in serving Sri Bhagavan, but rather busy themselves accepting service from others. It is improper to offer such people anything.

Question 7: What is the disposition of a suddha-bhakta (pure devotee)?

Answer: A pure devotee’s disposition is that he does not regard anything as being meant for his own enjoyment. Rather he sees that all objects in existence are meant for serving Sri Bhagavan. All living and non-living things exist only to serve Sri Krsna. Therefore, all our activities should tend toward His unalloyed service. “Hrsikena hrsikesa-sevanam bhaktir ucyate – serving the Supreme Master of the senses through all of one’s senses is called bhakti.” All our services must target Him only. It is necessary that through all of our senses we render service to Lord Hrsikesa – the Supreme Master of the senses. All are servitors of Krsna. Therefore, we shall not deprive them of their service. Let all of them offer their service to Krsna. Our only prayer should be that He may accept our service.

Selfishly utilizing bricks to build my own home is inappropriate, but if I utilize those same bricks to construct a temple for Sri Bhagavan, I will be greatly benefited. Inert objects are perfectly utilized only when they are engaged in serving the Supreme Lord. When they are employed by the living entities to procure sense gratification, then they have certainly been misused. Our senses should be directed to His service. All objects are essentially properties of Godhead. They are never meant for the enjoyment of conditioned people. It is wrong and misguided to think that these things are created for us. Nothing is for our sensuous enjoyment. Everything should be properly adjusted for the service of Godhead.

The existence of every inert object in this world only becomes meaningful when it is engaged in serving Sri Hari. For example, consider these bamboo canes. If they are used to prepare a pavilion for listening to harikatha, then they have actually been utilized properly. We must use all objects solely to serve the devotees and temple of Sri Hari. All the actions of a devotee are designed to please Bhagavan and to serve Sri Hari, guru and Vaisnavas. A pure devotee does not do anything for his sensuous enjoyment. A pure devotee never performs any activity for himself or for his bodily relatives, but he performs all sorts of activities exclusively for the Absolute. He is always true to the service of the Supreme Lord.

Question 8: Who can attain krsna-prema?

Answer: Only they who sincerely and subserviently accept the guidance of sri gurudeva, who is non-different from Sri Rupa Gosvami, will receive the mercy of Sri Bhagavan. They alone will be able to attain krsna-prema.

Question 9: Who should be served?

Answer: Sri guru and Bhagavan are beings who exist beyond the purview of the material senses. Those who have attained harmony in adjustment to the Absolute Person see guru as isvara, the controller, and as devata, the divine. Sri guru is the servitor aspect of the personality of Godhead (sevaka-bhagavan) or the embodied vessel of love of Godhead (asraya-vigraha). This is why the guru is simultaneously Bhagavan and bhakta. Even though the guru is Bhagavan, he is also the most beloved of Bhagavan.

guru* purna-sakti, krsna purna-saktimana
dui vastu bheda nai, sastra paramana

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta (Adi-lila 4.96)

Sri guru is the Lord’s complete energy, and Sri Krsna is the almighty. The verdict reached by assessing the testimonies of sastra is that there is in fact no difference between these two absolute beings.

* The verse ordinarily begins radha purna-sakti.

It is essential that we exclusively serve that God-loving guru (bhagavat-bhakta guru) who is engaged in the service of Bhagavan twenty-four hours a day. And along with our service to sri guru, it is necessary and beneficial for us to serve those Vaisnavas who have guru-nistha – that is, unshakable faith in sri guru and determined steadfastness in serving him. But it will be of no use to serve numerous others on the assumption that they, too, are lovers of God.

Nowadays, due to the influence of Kali, we find many hypocrites and atheists masquerading as bhaktas and Vaisnavas. It is for this reason that I have stated that one should only serve guru and Vaisnavas, for only by serving the pure devotees will one achieve genuine spiritual benefit. However, if a devotee, in the course of time, becomes a non-devotee, then one should not continue to busily accept pains to serve him, because by serving a non-devotee one will only achieve inauspiciousness.

It is imperative that we exclusively serve a bhagavat-bhakta guru and receive guidance from him alone. And upon taking shelter at his lotus feet, one should serve him with deep faith. The essence of all scriptural injunctions is visrambhena guroh seva. Visrambhena means ‘with deep faith and intimacy’. By rendering service to sri guru and the Vaisnavas with deep faith and profound affection, one will certainly achieve eternal welfare, and Krsna will surely become pleased. The guru should never be considered a mortal human being. Since he is in fact flawless, one should not try to perceive any fault in him.

Time is fleeting and good fortune does not last forever. Therefore, as long as time remains in a person’s life, it is necessary for him to utilize the opportunity and facility to engage in hari-bhajana in the association of genuine devotees.

Translated by the Rays of The Harmonist team
from Srila Prabhupadera Upadesamrta
Questions re-numbered for this on-line presentation

Srila Prabhupadera Upadesamrta is a compilation of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada’s instructions in question-and-answer form.


Special On-line Edition: On the disappearance day of Sri Srimad Bhakti Pranana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja, 22 October 2010
Next Issue – Year 3, Issue 10: “The Emporium of Everything”, 28 October 2010
Visit Rays of The Harmonist Monthly On-Line Edition at purebhakti.com for a complete list of articles
Download PDFs of the Rays of The Harmonist bi-yearly magazine from purebhakti.com
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Rays of The Harmonist On-line; Year 3, Issue 9, "The Disposition of a Suddha-bhakta", by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura Prabhupada is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License to ensure that it is always freely available.

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Are you going to India? Can you bring items for Srila Gurudeva?

Please email any replies to  bhaktihealth108@gmail.com

All Glories to Sri Sri Guru and Gauranga!

All Glories to Sri Sri Radha Vinode Bihariji!
Dandavats Maharaja's, Prabhu's and Didi's,
At the request of Sripad Brajanath Prabhu, we want to gather a list of devotees who are planning to go to India and may be able to bring items from the west for Srila Gurudeva. If you are going to India for Kartika or earlier please email me at bhaktihealth108@gmail.com with the dates of your departure and the approximate amount of space you will have in your luggage to bring items for Srila Gurudeva (i.e. a whole suitcase or small carry on etc.). Please put the date of your departure in the subject line of your email and also include a phone number and best time to be reached in the body of the email.
As many of you know we have also created a fund through Bhakti Projects to raise money for any of Srila Gurudeva's health needs such as organic produce, medicine, treatments, etc. if you would like to donate or know someone who would like to donate you can click on this link https://www.paypal.com/cgi


Thank you everyone for your help with this seva.
Srila Gurudeva ki Jaya!
Vaisnava Seva Abhilas, 
madhavi dasi

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domingo, 26 de septiembre de 2010

Srila BV Narayan Maharaja Movie 2010/09/23 Janakpuri


Pray Srila Gurudeva's Hari Katha Enters Our Hearts

Srila BV Narayan Maharaja


2010/09/23 Janakpuri



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viernes, 24 de septiembre de 2010

Srila BV Narayan Maharaja Health Update "More Good News"


 Respected Devotees and Friends

Please accept our humble dandavats pranams.  All glories to Sri Guru and Sri Gauranga and all glories to Sri Sri Radha Vinode Bihariji.

We have just received the results of the latest cancer testing diagnosis undertaken this morning.

The news is positive and reassuring that we are making progress.  However, it does not represent a definitive "recovery" statement.  We are heading in the right direction but we are certainly not out of the woods yet.

The test was administered by Raman Poonchhi, one of Srila Gurudeva's disciples whose company is called Gaur Diagno - www.gaurdiagno.com

The test is a blood test called ONKO-SURE-DR-70.  This is a process already approved by several significant jurisdictions including the United States' FDA.  It is a relatively new method and is an improvement on the "CEA" method which is less exact.

Cancer cells over produce something called "FDP" and it is this that the blood test tracks.

The calibration of the test is marked in three ranges.  Zero to 1.2 represents no danger and no further testing is required.  1.21 to 2.5 means that the patient should be re-tested within three months.  And 2.51 and above means that the patient needs to see a physician or an oncologist.

Srila Gurudeva's report showed 2.2.  This implies that there is a condition but not to the same advanced degree as originally found.

It is also worth noting that a separate blood test undertaken for measuring glucose level, protein and liver function has improved.

This is all very positive news and is the result of the causeless mercy of Sri Giriraja, Lord Narasimhadeva, Sri Sri Radha & Krsna, our beloved Gurudeva and the sincere prayers that have been offered by the devotees day and night since the first communication last Friday.

Please be assured that we will remain praying for more causeless mercy and miracles; we are vigilant, watchful and fully active to ensure the complete recovery of Srila Gurudeva. We continue to administer medical remedies and improved nutrition to Srila Gurudeva.

Furthermore, in two weeks, we will undertake another ONKO-SURE-DR-70 test.  We will keep you informed.

Please continue your prayers, kirtan and bhajans so that we can elicit the causeless mercy of Sri Giriraja, Sri Sri Radha-Krsna and our Guru Parampara.

In due course we will also update you with a report on the remedies we are employing and the nutritional steps we are taking so that you can be fully informed.

Vaisnavadasanudasa and aspirant for the seva of Sri Guru and Vaisnavas  Swami B.V. Madhava Maharaja, Brajanath dasa and Sriman Yasodananda prabhu

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miércoles, 22 de septiembre de 2010

For Visvarupa Mahotsvava - September 23, 2010

Tridandisvami Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja
(Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Matha, Mathura, India, September 13, 2000)


[Dear Readers,
Please accept our humble obeisances. All glories to Sri Sri Guru and Gauranga. September 23, 2010 is Visvarupa Mahotsava, and also Srila Prabhupada Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja's and Srila Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja's anniversary of taking the renounced order of life, sannyasa. Therefore, 
in honor of this day, we are sending this lecture give by Srila Narayana Gosvami Maharaja:]

     Today is a very sacred day in our line. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu took sannyasa and began to search for his brother, Sri Visvarupa. While searching, He found out on this day that His brother had been in Pandarapur, and there he had left his body and had taken samadhi on the bank of the river Bhima. Then, although Mahaprabhu was observing Caturmasya-vrata very strictly for four months, He shaved off His hair on this day. Before this year, He had never shaved for these four months, nor did He cut his nails. He observed all the rules and regulations of Caturmasya. There are many items that are not allowed during Caturmasya, such as leafy vegetables on the first month, yogurt on the second month, milk on the third month, and mustard oil on the forth month. Besides this, throughout all four months, tomatoes, eggplants, and several other foodstuffs are prohibited. Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu used to follow all these rules very strictly, but nowadays we see that devotees don't follow.
     Our Guru Maharaja and Srila Prabhupada Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura were very strong in this regard. Srila Prabhupada said, "Take my photo during the four months of Caturmasya-vrata to show that I never shave at that time. Always keep it; otherwise so many so-called disciples will say, 'Oh, Prabhupada never observed Caturmasya-vrata'." Parama-pujyapada Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja gave concessions in the western countries, and that is the only reason also used to shave. The westerners could not follow strictly at that time. That is why he allowed tomatoes and eggplant, and that is also why he used to take them. And that is why he also allowed gaja, carrots. I am therefore also giving concessions, not here in India, but in western countries. If the devotees there like, they can take these items, but we don't take them. We should strictly follow our proper line from Mahaprabhu to Srila Prabhupada Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami Thakura and my Gurus. In western countries some concession should be given, but here in India we are very strict. If we cannot follow this, then how can we follow Krsna, and how can we serve Radha and Krsna? Mahaprabhu shaved – after two months – and we follow this.
     After taking initiation, Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja, in his youth called Abhaya Carana De, became Abhaya Carana dasa Adhikari. After some time he became penniless, and about one month earlier than this day he reached here – Sri Kesavaji Gaudiya Matha. I requested him, "Don't stay anywhere else. You are my siksa-guru, you are the friend of my Guru, and you are a very senior devotee of Srila Prabhupada Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Gosvami Thakura. I have known you since 1946." He accepted and said, "I will stay here." There were two rooms here. I was in this room, and I requested him to stay in the room next to mine. When this temple room was made, however, I went to that room and I requested him to go to the room opposite that one. He stayed there, and he used to write throughout the entire night. He used to publish a magazine from here. It was from here that he established the 'League of Devotees', and later on he named it 'The International Society for Krsna Consciousness'. He published the first three volumes of Srimad-Bhagavatam in Delhi, and he presented them to me. I used to edit his Hindi in the magazine Bhagavata Darsana, and he also continued that magazine while he was in Jhansi.
     While he was here and I requested him, "You are so qualified, and Srila Prabhupada wanted you to preach, especially in English, and to go to western countries. You served him by writing so many articles in the 'Harmonist' and other magazines. You are very qualified. You should try to follow the order of your Gurudeva and take sannyasa?" He replied, "Oh, I used to fear this. When my Prabhupada initiated me, I began to read Srimad-Bhagavatam, and I saw in a sloka there: 'yasyaham anugrhnami, harisye tad-dhanam sanaih. Those whom I accept – I make them street beggars.' So I feared that would be my fate. I thought, 'I have a good family – my wife, and my sons and daughters. What will become of them? Now I'm very wealthy; but if that happens, what will become of them?" [*See endnote]
     One or two months after initiation he had become the manager of Bengal Chemical. Later he left that and came to Allahabad, where he started his own business called Prayag Chemical. That also failed. Then he started a very large medical shop, and after one year it also failed. Then he began to advertise medicines, as a medical representative. That failed, and he became poor like a beggar. Then he came here to Mathura to sell his medicines, and in the meantime I requested him, "What are you doing? You have not come to this world to sell medicine. You are a representative of Krsna and Mahaprabhu. You should remember who you are, and take sannyasa. You are a friend of my Gurudeva – a very bosom friend. He is just about to come here. He will be here in about four or five days, so please be prepared to take sannyasa." Muni Maharaja was here, and at that time he was about ninety-five years of age. He told Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja, "If you take the renounced order, then I must take it with you." In this way he very much inspired him. Soon our Gurudeva came and I told him, "Why you are not compelling him? He cannot disobey you. He is your bosom friend. You must insist that he take the sannyasa order."

     Then, one day, he and Gurudeva were sitting in Gurudeva 's room and were joking and talking with each other. I went there and requested my Gurudeva, "Why are you not telling him to take sannyasa?" My Gurudeva said, "Oh, now it is the best time to take sannyasa. You should not fear. What was to be done has already been done. Your wife has left you, your sons have left you, and everyone else has left. Your wealth is gone and now you are like a street beggar." He became ready and took sannyasa where you are sitting, in the middle of this room, in front of the Deities. His own Deity, Mahaprabhu, is also here with Radha-Krsna, and He was the Deity from Jhansi. I was the priest. I made his danda, uttariya (sannyasa upper cloth), and all other items; and I taught him how to use them. Though he was so much senior to me, though he was my siksa-guru, I also became his siksa-guru in this – how to take sannyasa and how to use all these paraphernalia.
     Kirtana was performed by Krsna dasa Babaji Maharaja and Sesayayi Prabhu, and so many others were chanting: "Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare." During the ceremony, kirtana was always going on. Krsna dasa Babaji Maharaja continually performed kirtana. After this, Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja began to preach in Agra, then he went to Delhi, and then he came to Vrndavana, to Radha-Damodara. In order to receive the blessing of Srila Rupa Gosvami, he stayed there, very near to him. At that time also he was penniless, and I used to go there and give him my chaddar to sit on. He had no bed, and practically no other possessions. He was very simple. Somehow he used to make capatis. He would role them and I would put them on the fire and cook them with ghee. He knew how to make beautiful and tasteful preparations, and he used to teach others. From his letters I came to know that he would cook himself and teach others how to cook delicious foods. He used to write to me from New York, "Please send very sweet pera from Mathura; not less than ten kilos."
     Especially you senior devotees should remember his pastimes – how he was a very strong personality, how he preached throughout the world in a couple of years, established so many preaching centers, and wrote and published a variety of books in many languages. He did parikrama of the entire world about twelve times, and now he is ordering me, "You should do it more times than I did." He is arranging everything, and he is always calling me, "You have done it ten times, and now you should complete at least fifteen times". Sometimes the guru wants to make his disciples look greater than himself; and then he becomes very happy. He says, "My disciple is preaching so much here and there. He is like a father. When Maharaja Dasaratha heard that Ramacandra was very strong and could defeat the entire world, he was extremely happy. When Nanda Maharaja heard that his son Krsna has lifted Govardhana for seven days on the little finger of His left hand, he became so happy and said, "Oh, how my son is victorious!" A guru becomes so happy if his disciples are qualified. My Gurudeva will also be very happy if I'm going here and there. He will shower his mercy on me, and Srila Swami Maharaja is also like this.
     In this meeting, his dear senior disciples will speak something in his glorification, and thus offer puspanjali (an offering of flowers in the form of words of glorification) at his lotus feet. After that we will perform arcana (worship). [Some senior disciples of Srila Prabhupada, like Vrindavana Vilasini dasi, Krishna Kumari dasi, and Radha-kunda dasa spoke, after which Srila Maharaja spoke again:]
     I met him in 1946 in Calcutta, when there was no ISKCON. He was apparently simply a grhastha Vaisnava. He had been a friend of my Gurudeva since 1923. My Guru Maharaja was somewhat senior because he joined Srila Prabhupada in 1916. He left his university studies and everything else in 1918, and at that time he fully joined. Then, in 1923, Sri Abhaya Carana De was initiated by Srila Prabhupada – first harinama and then diksa initiation. In 1941 our Guru Maharaja established Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti, and Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja was also one of the establishers. From the beginning, therefore, as one of the founders, he was very intimate with Gaudiya Vedanta Samiti.

     When I met him in 1946, there was no ISKCON. He was alone, but he was serving his Gurudeva, Srila Prabhupada Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, in so many ways. When I saw him I was very attracted. This is my intrinsic nature – that person who is a friend of my Gurudeva, who helped my Gurudeva, who has done a little service for my Gurudeva, who glorifies Gurudeva – I like that devotee and I can give my life for him. I saw that although my Gurudeva was a sannyasi and Srila Svami Maharaja was a grhastha, Guru Maharaja gave him the same seat as himself. He never gave him a lower or inferior seat. The devotion of any person is the only standard of how much we should respect him. My Gurudeva was giving very much importance to this person, and therefore I also accepted him in that way. I thought, "He must be someone special; some qualification compels my Gurudeva to give him so much honor." I therefore began to serve him, and he was also very attracted to me. At that time I was very young, only 25 years old, but he used to talk with me in a friendly way.
     I know him very well. He had a strong character and never feared anyone. He was like a lion, like his Prabhupada, and like our Gurudeva. He used to cut all the arguments of the mayavadis, sahajiyas, and many other unbonafide groups. He never tolerated their misconceptions and he made no compromise with them. He was very strong. At that time Dr. Radha-Krishna was the president of India. He was one of the intellectual giants of the entire world, and a very learned person, especially in mayavada philosophy. He wrote an article about Bhagavad-Gita, and there he said that Krsna's soul is Krsna, but His body is not His soul. There is some difference between the possessor and possession. In reply, Srila Swami Maharaja wrote a very powerful article in our Bhagavata Patrika magazine, and it was sent to that president of India. In that article he challenged all his arguments and said, "You can reply and try to defeat my arguments. I'm not writing to you as the president of India, but I'm writing to you because you are a learned person of Advaitavada philosophy." Dr. Radha-Krishna could not reply. Such persons cannot reply.
     He also cut the arguments of the 'murghi' mission. Do you know the murghi mission? It is the mission whose members kill murghis, hens, and eat them. What mission is that? The Rama-Krsna mission. They are not religious persons. They are not even a welfare society because they will even eat cow flesh and other forbidden things. They don't want to honor the Gita; they simply give importance to bread and butter. They don't believe in God, who can give eternal bliss in heaven; they believe in bread and butter. Srila Swami Maharaja never cared for them. He was against their philosophy and activities, and he cut all their arguments. Perhaps Vivikananda had never read scriptures like the Vedas, Upanisads, and Srimad-Bhagavatam. His followers are only social persons; they have nothing to do with religion. Srila Swami Maharaja was fearless like a lion, and He defeated all their arguments. He was in the line of our guru-parampara. He used to follow all the doctrines, all the acaranas (practices and behavior), vaisnava-sadacara (pure habits), and Vaisnava etiquette. I've never seen him wearing so many kunti malas around his neck, as some of his disciples do.
     We should totally follow him. We should also try to be like strong lions – jumping. He was like this. He jumped the seven oceans from India and went to New York. What did he do there? He performed a miracle. He turned hippies into happies. They are now happy. A gang of hippies became a high class of devotees. He gave a lesson to this world, that even a street beggar who has very strong faith in serving his Gurudeva and Radha-Krsna, Mahaprabhu, and Nityananda Prabhu, can jump anywhere – in fire, over the Alps and the Himalayas, in the ocean – anywhere. He can go anywhere and Krsna will help him. Although penniless, he 'jumped over the ocean.' Somehow he traveled on Scindia Navigation, and simply chanted the holy names: "Sri Krsna Caitanya Prabhu Nityananda Sri Advaita Gadadhara Srivasadi Gaura bhakta-vrnda; and Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, Krsna Krsna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare." He never took note of whether anyone was looking at him or not. We think, "Oh, all are seeing me," but he was never like that. Sometimes hippies used to dance to his singing. They sometimes offered him a bottle of wine or cigarettes and addressed him, "O my friend." They were very quickly attracted to him and they gradually gave up everything else. He never made any compromise, especially with the babajis of Radha-kunda who speak sahajiya philosophy. He was like my Gurudeva and his Prabhupada. Nowadays, however, so many are going to Radha-kunda and taking babaji-vesa (the dress, mood, and behavior of the babajis) from the babajis who are not actually following Mahaprabhu.   
     So many ISKCON members are also doing this. What becomes of them? They also become like those bogus babajis So we should try to be like Srila Swami Maharaja and follow his process, line and instruction. He used to say that if a blind person and a lame person travel together, they can go anywhere they like. The blind person will take the lame person on his shoulders. The lame person has eyes and he will say, "You should go this way and that way." The blind person will walk and the lame person will direct. The western world is blind and India is lame. What is the meaning? India has no source of wealth to preach this mission throughout the world. It has eyes but no legs; it is so lame. America and all western countries are very wealthy, but they have no eyes. If both combine and cooperate, we can preach this mission to the entire world.
     He used to say, "Bombay is my office, Mayapura is my sadhana-bhumi or place of sadhana-bhajana, and my home is Vrndavana." That is why he came to Vrndavana in his final days and took samadhi there – in his home, in Vrndavana – in Goloka Vrndavana. I don't know why he was so pleased with me that he always used to love me so much. He gave me so many occasions in which I have fully served him. He was very much attracted to me, and it was my fortune that he gave me so many orders to serve him. He told me, as his last service, "Put me in samadhi with your own hands." There were so many god-brothers who were very scholarly and very high-class. And there were more than a hundred very qualified GBC and all others. I had never gone to a university, or anything like that. Still he had so much faith in me, and therefore he ordered me in this way. And I followed his instructions. He also told me, "You should try to help my devotees. I brought them, but I could not train them fully due to their inability to fully accept my instructions." Then I called Tamal Krsna, Brahmananda, Bhagavan, Kirtananda, and so many others, and I told them, "Don't quarrel after his departure. You should not think that he will die. A Guru like him never dies. He is always in this world. He is eternally present. So if you want to serve him, you should try to preach his mission all over the world – as he wanted. Don't quarrel for position, name and fame, wealth, or disciples. I know that after the disappearance of a high class of acarya, some quarrel, and some problems come. But I think that you are qualified persons, and you should therefore not quarrel for all these things.   
     Try to give respect to all the disciples of Srila Swami Maharaja, regardless of whether they are senior or junior. You should be very liberal to all, and then you can protect his mission. Otherwise you can destroy his whole mission. I know that you have learned something – how to make money. I know that He has trained you all how, very easily, in a moment, to make so much money. But I think that you'll have to learn more. You will have to learn what are his intrinsic moods, why he descended here from that world, and what was his mission. You should try to understand this. His mission was the same as that of Mahaprabhu. 'Anarpita carim carat' – this mission. And they both did it through sankirtana. "You know what is kirtana, but you do not know what is real kirtana of the heart. You do not know what is the pure name. If the pure name manifests, a man is totally changed. Love and affection comes for all, even for creepers, trees and everything else. There will be no quarreling, and then you will be 'trnad api sunicena, taror api sahisnuna, amanina manadena, kirtaniya sada harih.' Then I will think that you know his intrinsic mood and you are following that." If they will honor all devotees, I think that all will return. But if they are not giving honor and respect to the devotees, no one will join them. Even a dog knows. If you will call, "O too too too," he will come. All can understand if you have bhakti in your heart and honor for all devotees. As Srila Rupa Gosvami has told: krneti yasya giri tam manasadriyeta, diksasti cet pranatibhis ca bhajantam isam. We should try to honor all, according to their qualification in bhakti, and then everyone will be trained and no one will fall. Otherwise, all are going to fall down.
     If anyone has a strong personality like your Prabhupada, serving Gurudeva and preaching like him, he will be very high class of devotee. So it was on this day that your Prabhupada took the renounced order from here, and he preached over the entire world in a couple of years. This miracle cannot be seen anywhere else. He was one of the arms of Srila Prabhupada Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura and Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, and they predicted his coming. Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has written, "I think that within a very few years, thousands of western devotees, wearing sikhas, tulsi malas, and chanting Hare Krsna, will join Indian devotees. Both will chant and dance together." This is what we are now seeing everywhere. So we should chant and remember in the proper line, and all other things we will come automatically. The maha-mantra, Hare Krsna, Hare Krsna, is Radha and Krsna Themselves, and Mahaprabhu Himself. If we are chanting and remembering with sadacara, proper behavior, we will achieve the goal very soon.

     Srila Bhaktivedanta Swami Maharaja is showering his blessings upon all those who, although having left Krsna consciousness, are now coming again to this Krsna consciousness movement. What is the real meaning of ISKCON, International Society for Krishna Consciousness? Krsna-bhakti-rasa bhavita matih-"Pure devotional service in Krsna consciousness cannot be had even by pious activity in vaidhi-bhakti for hundreds and thousands of lives. It can only be attained by paying one price – the intense greed to obtain it. If it is available anywhere, one should purchase it without delay." (Caitanya-caritamrta, Madhya-lila,.8.70).] If anyone is following this principle, then he is an ISKCON member in the real sense; otherwise not. So we should try to know his mood – krsna-bhakti rasa bhavita matih. If our hearts are saturated with the bhakti-rasa of Vrndavana, then we are ISKCON members in the truest sense. If anyone is falling down, he was never a real ISKCON member, because anyone who has a taste in bhakti-rasa will never fall down. A true ISKCON member can never fall down.

[*Endnote: A note to those readers who are newly getting to know Srila Prabhupada Bhaktivedanta Swami: Srila Narayana Maharaja is describing here, and in other places in this lecture, Srila Prabhupada's naravata-lila, his human-like pastimes. Prabhupada was never a struggling conditioned soul. He descended from Krsna's abode; but he showed by example, for our benefit, how we can gradually develop faith and become pure devotees.]



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Rays of The Harmonist Monthly On-line Edition

This article from the Rays of The Harmonist Monthly On-line Edition is being resent by keep_in_touch@purebhakti.tv.
The Rays of The Harmonist banner-logo is being used with permission.

Special On-line Edition for the Appearance Day of
Srila Saccidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura

sri sri guru gauranga jayatah!

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Year-3, Special On-line Edition
Posted: 21 September 2010

Dedicated to
nitya-lila pravista om visnupada

Sri Srimad Bhakti Prajnana Kesava Gosvami Maharaja

Inspired by and under the guidance of

Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja

Appearing in English for the first time

Conceiving of Caste Distinctions in Vaisnavas –
Vaisnave Jati-buddhi

by Srila Saccidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura

Portrait of by Srila Saccidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura

~ The belief that a pure Vaisnava belongs to a mundane caste paves the road to hell ~

In Sri Caitanya-Bhagavata, Sri Vrndavana dasa Thakura has written:

je se kule vaisnavera janma kene naya
tathapi sarvottama sarva-sastre kaya
je papistha vaisnavera jati-buddhi kare
janma janma adhama yonite dubi mare

Sri Caitanya-bhagavata (Madhya-khanda, 10.100, 102)

The meaning of this verse is as follows: “There is no flaw in the bhakti of a person who has developed genuine attachment to serving Sri Visnu, regardless of which dynasty he has taken birth in. All the scriptures have declared that Vaisnavas are superior to those who are intoxicated by their good lineage and respectable caste, or by their distinguished work or vast wealth, even if they are of the highest birth. The living entity’s eternal goal is to awaken krsna-prema, and worldly considerations of high and low cannot effect one’s progress toward attaining that prema. If someone perceives that, externally, a particular Vaisnava was not fortunate enough to have been born in a high caste or to belong to a respected lineage, or that he is poverty-stricken, then that person’s attachment to sinful activities will increase immensely. Moreover, his outlook will degrade his consciousness so much that he will subsequently have to take birth in the lowest of species.”

The purport of these statements is extremely profound. Because of the way the people of today have come to behave, it is impossible for me to imagine that they will ever be able to offer Vaisnavas proper respect without first understanding that purport. Through these statements, Srila Vrndavana dasa Thakura wished to impress upon us that one should never consider a pure Vaisnava to be underprivileged in any way, no matter what dynasty he has appeared in. The scriptures unanimously affirm that if someone has become a pure Vaisnava, he is truly the greatest of all personalities. A pure Vaisnava should never be considered lowly on account of his birth within a low caste. Only those who are heinously sinful adopt such a conception, and as a consequence they wander amidst the lowest forms of life, birth after birth.

~ Absolute spirituality has no connection with social stratification ~

There is no separate caste known as the “Vaisnava caste”. If someone takes full shelter of suddha-bhakti then he alone is known as a Vaisnava, regardless of his birth in a brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, sudra or even antyaja* (outcaste) dynasty. It is inappropriate to try to ascertain the extent of his value based on his caste. But in the age of Kali, people are extremely selfish. They have created a caste masquerading as ‘vaisnava-dharma ’ and have declared that only those who take birth in that caste can be called Vaisnavas. Such behaviour is abominable.

* The four varnas are (1) brahmana – the priestly class; (2) ksatriya – the noble class; (3) vaisya – the merchant class, which includes those involved in business and agriculture; and (4) sudra – the artisan class. All others, including carnivores and so on, are considered outside the traditional Vedic model for society and are collectively termed antyaja.

The stratification of society into separate castes and varnas – namely, brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya and sudra – exists to maintain the proper execution of all worldly transactions. But there is no confluence between paramartha-dharma (absolute spirituality) and such stratification. Essentially, paramartha-dharma is perpetually resting on and grounded in the determination (nistha) of each individual. One who, by some good fortune, develops faith (sraddha) or confidence (visvasa) in exclusive devotional service to Sri Bhagavan is indeed paramarthika, an absolute spiritualist. Neither his caste nor the duties and codes of conduct prescribed for him according to his varna play any role in his spiritual practices. Anyone who, absorbed in hypocrisy and faultfinding, busies himself declaring that a genuine spiritualist took birth in a low class family is extremely sinful.

~ Vaisnavas do not belong to any caste or ancestry ~

There is no such thing as Vaisnava-ancestry (vaisnava-vamsa). Ancestry cannot guarantee that one will become a Vaisnava. We find that even within various ‘vaisnava-vamsas ’, many individuals have taken birth who are a disgrace to their dynasty and who behave like demons. On the other hand, many great souls have taken birth in the families of dog-eaters (candalas) and barbarians (yavanas), yet they became Vaisnavas on the strength of practising pure bhakti. In fact, it is seen that many non-Vaisnavas have even taken birth in the dynasties of Vaisnava acaryas, while many Vaisnavas have taken birth in extremely irreligious dynasties. Therefore, any respect or honour that comes with the reputation of being born in a so-called Vaisnava-caste or in being a direct descendent of a Vaisnava acarya, can never add dignity to true vaisnava-dharma. Instead, it only increases the rivalrous moods that are antithetical to the principles of Vaisnavism. And the root cause of that rivalry is nothing but selfishness and incompetence.

~ It harms one’s bhakti to consider a non-devotee to be a Vaisnava
or to believe that a pure Vaisnava belongs to a particular caste ~

O readers! To the exact degree that you honour and respect a pure Vaisnava in accordance with the awakening of bhakti within him, disregarding any apparent shortcoming in his birth, you will be liberated from the mundane conception that Vaisnavas belong to any worldly caste.

There is no other way to attain bhakti than through the association of pure Vaisnavas. Yet if we associate with anyone and everyone considering them to be Vaisnavas, or if we dishonour a genuine Vaisnava by calling attention to the inferiority of the dynasty in which he was born, then we will be left with no hope of attaining the association of a pure Vaisnava. It is therefore imperative that we become unbiased and simple in all activities. If you dread being in a state of self-deception, then you should never adopt the belief that a Vaisnava belongs to some mundane caste.

Translated from Sri Gaudiya Patrika, Year 7, Issue 8
by the Rays of The Harmonist team


Next Issue – Year 3, Issue 9: “The Disposition of a Suddha Bhakta”, 28 September 2010
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martes, 21 de septiembre de 2010

Today's Morning Walk and Guru Puja with Srila BV Narayan Maharaja


Today's Morning Walk and Guru Puja with Srila BV Narayan Maharaja






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lunes, 20 de septiembre de 2010

Update: Today lots of good news for it is a very happy day.

Respected Devotees and Friends,
please accept our dandavats. All glories to Sri Guru and Sri Gauranga
and all glories to Sri Sri Radha Vinode Bihariji.

Srila Gurudeva showers his heartly blessings to all of you. He became
very pleased to receive your affectionate messages, filled with
heartfelt expressions for his physical well being. He is also very
pleased to have received so many wonderful, natural remedies in order
to fix the health problem that is troubling him. You have provided so
much valuable information and medical protocols, which has the potency
to cure any and all physical diseases. So many thanks for your amazing

Now we have to pray to Sri Giriraja to kindly bestow His special mercy,
so that Srila Gurudeva will again be in good health, for he is our very
life and soul; without him we cannot survive in this world.

Today lots of good news for it is a very happy day. This morning Srila
Gurudeva got up, started to perform his prayers and then did his
routine exercises. This was such a pleasant surprise for us. Not only
that, he expressed that he will go for his morning walk. There we went
and the devotees in our Math beamed with radiant smiles and
overjoyed hearts. After a good stretch Srila Gurudeva sat down and
asked if there were any questions. All smiled and looked at Sripad
Madhava Maharaja to receive his approval. Maharaja nodded a big NO
for the doctor warned to be very careful in the first 15 days, no
exertion of any kind. Still, one very nice devotee presented that we all
desire excellent health for Srila Gurudeva so that he will be in
Vrndavan, Govardhan and all the places that he usually resides during
Kartik Parikram. Srila Gurudeva smiled and replied that very soon he
will recover, be healthy again, and definitely during Kartik he will be in

Our main doctor has complete confidence that Srila Gurudeva's
physical body will be cured in no time. At the moment we give ayur veda
medicines and also some powerful herbal formulas, provided with the
kind help of all you and many expert doctors. Only organic produces are
engaged for cooking; also only alkaline water. Unbelievable, in India
and in Gaudiya Math!!

Everything we apply is done with the consultation of our main doctor,
Dr Raju. He is our good friend since many years, very qualified,
religious, broad minded, knowledgeable, gentle and humble.
BUT, we need your help more than anything, for only by expressing our
love and affection will Srila Gurudeva be convinced that he has to stay
with us for many, many more years to come. Over the last years, Srila
Gurudeva has shared with us that his time in this world is coming to an
end. He says that he has done everything, and even more than he could
possibly imagine for establishing the Mission of Sri Caitanya
Mahaprabhu, as it is delivered by the causeless mercy of Srila Rupa
Gosvami. When we hear him speak like this we become very, very sad.
We urge that he stays with us, reminding him that he has to finish
translation of Srimad Bhagavatam, Vedanta Sutra and Sri Caitanya
Caritamrta with the commentary of Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti
Thakura. Then he becomes inspired and replies that he will stay with us
so long as we provide him with opportunity to write and publish these
Granthas. Also, we tell him that he has promised to come to China, to
Australia, Fiji, New Zealand and to Houston to install Thakurji in the
soon to be completed Mandirs in these respective places. Then he
smiles, nods, and says that he wants to do all this.

Our sincere request and personal pledge is that we try very, very hard
to somehow invoke Krsna's causeless mercy to help us do that which will
bring immense pleasure to Srila Gurudeva. He will reciprocate because
this is the very nature of Srila Gurudeva, of Sri Krsna, and most of all
of Bhakti Devi.

In a day or two we will post the next update.
Vaisnavadasanudasa, aspirant for the seva of Sri Guru and Vaisnavas
Swami B.V. Madhava & Brajanath das

One should understand Krishna in truth, and this one can do only by serving a pure
Srimad Bhagavatam, 7.9.24

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domingo, 19 de septiembre de 2010

Today's health update and a place to share your prayers

‎"Devotees in the Janakpuri temple of New Delhi are doing Kirtans
continuously for Srila Gurudev's better health."
(from Savitri didi -2hrs ago)

"Srila Gurudeva is feeling better. It was reported from Delhi that he
said that after just a day of Ayurvedic treament and thousands of
loving prayers. Let us keep on praying. Kirtaniya Sada Hari !!!!"
(from Anjali didi - 30 min.ago))


For the purification of ourselves, the sadhakas, disciples and well-wishers of our dearmost

Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja, we ask that you submit your heartfelt prayers for the recovery and overall well-being of our dearly beloved Srila Gurudeva.

Click here to offer your prayers and use the "Leave a Reply" box below. Thanks and dandavat pranams to all.

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For the Appearance Day of Srila Jiva Gosvami

Tridandisvami Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Gosvami Maharaja

Srila Jiva Gosvami

[Dear Respected readers,
Please accept our humble obeisances. All glories to Sri Sri Guru and Gauranga.
Today, September 19, 2010, is the divine appearance day of Srila Jiva Gosvami. In honor of this auspicious day, we are sending this narration of his life history:]

     Srila Jiva Gosvami’s father, Anupama, was the brother of Srila Rupa Gosvami and Srila Sanatana Gosvami. His exalted father and uncles were employed by the Muslim ruler, Srila Sanatana Gosvami as prime minister, Srila Rupa Gosvami as the private secretary, and Anupama as treasurer. All three of them met Caitanya Mahaprabhu when He came to Ramakeli where they lived.
     As the only son of the three brothers, Jiva received abundant affection. Srila Rupa Gosvami was always especially affectionate towards him and treated him as if he were his own son. When Jiva was still very young, Srila Rupa Gosvami took him to Mahaprabhu, who blessed him by placing His hand on his head.
     During childhood, Jiva studied and soon learned all logic, Sanskrit grammar, and theistic philosophy from the books in his father’s home. Before Srila Rupa Gosvami and Anupama left household life to retire in Vrndavana, they divided all the family’s wealth and property, allocating sufficient funds for Jiva to continue his studies. All three brothers realized that he was the only son in their dynasty, so they nurtured him with great affection and ensured he had whatever material facility he required.
     Jiva had a very soft nature, and as he grew, he gradually began worshipping Deities of Sri Sri Radha-Krsna. Making garlands for Them and offering puja to Them, he would become immersed in meditation, preferring these activities to playing with other children. When he was about fourteen years old, he went to Navadvipa. By then, Mahaprabhu had returned to the spiritual world and all the devotees of Navadvipa had left and gone elsewhere. Because Navadvipa now brought them all great sadness, Srivasa Pandita, Advaita Acarya, and everyone else had left, and Navadvipa was deserted.
     A few days before Jiva’s arrival, Nityananda Prabhu had arrived at Srivasangana from Khardaha. When Jiva Gosvami arrived, Nityananda Prabhu was very pleased to meet him. Nityananda prabhu placed His feet on Jiva’s head and said, “I came here just to meet with you; otherwise I would have stayed in Khardaha.” He showed Jiva all the places of Mahaprabhu’s pastimes in Navadvipa, and then showed him great mercy by ordering him to go stay with Srila Rupa Gosvami and Srila Sanatana Gosvami in Vrndavana.
     On the way to Vrndavana, Jiva stopped in Varanasi, where he met a disciple of Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya named Madhusudana Vacaspati who was teaching Vedanta, but not the commentary of Sankaracarya, which was famous at that time. Mahaprabhu had refuted that commentary when Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya tried to teach it to Him. Madhusudana Vacaspati was a great scholar and, having studied and understood everything which Mahaprabhu had taught to Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya and Srila Rupa and Sanatana Gosvamis, was teaching it there. Jiva Gosvami went to his home and learned all bhakti-vedanta from him. He also learned Sankaracarya’s commentary, because without learning it, he would have been unable to refute it. After studying all of this and fully understanding it, he proceeded to Vrndavana. There in Vrndavana, Sanatana Gosvami placed him in the care of Rupa Gosvami, and he stayed near Rupa Gosvami’s hut at the Radha-Damodara temple.
     Rupa Gosvami would read everything he was writing to Jiva Gosvami. One day while they were in the midst of reading together, an effulgent, elderly brahmana arrived there. This was most likely, judging from his age and his scholarship, Sri Vallabhacarya, who knew Rupa Gosvami from the time Mahaprabhu was in Prayaga. He was approximately the same age as Advaita Acarya, so Rupa Gosvami would have been the appropriate age to have been his son. He asked, “Rupa, what are you writing these days?”
     Hesitating a little, Srila Rupa Gosvami replied, “I am writing a book entitled Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu.” Vallabhacarya then picked up the book and, turning the pages, said, “Very good, I will look through it and correct any errors.”
     At that time Jiva Gosvami was fanning Rupa Gosvami with a leaf from the tala tree, but when he heard Vallabhacarya say this, he felt disturbed; according to him, his Gurudeva was being criticized. Later when he went to the river to fetch water, he met Vallabhacarya, who was just finishing his midday bath. Jiva Gosvami said, “Gosai, you said before that you would proofread the Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu which Rupa Gosvami is writing. If you have found any errors, precisely where are they?”
     Vallabhacarya replied, “How can you understand, child? Have you studied Sanskrit grammar?”
     “Yes, a little.”
     “Then what could you possibly understand?”
     “Still, please just show me any errors you have detected.” When Vallabhacarya showed him an apparent error, a fierce debate commenced between them. Eventually Jiva Gosvami established the point so convincingly that Vallabhacarya could neither refute it nor give any answer.
     When Vallabhacarya returned to the Rupa Gosvami’s hut, he asked, “Who was that boy who was fanning you? He is very intelligent and extremely learned in the scriptures.”
     Very humbly and with folded hands Rupa Gosvami replied, “He is the son of my younger brother and is also my disciple. He does not know how to behave.”
     “No, he is a genius, and in the future he will be very famous.”
Soon afterwards, Vallabhacarya left. When Jiva Gosvami arrived with the water, Srila Rupa Gosvami said to him, “You are so intolerant that you quarrel with an elderly, scholarly brahmana who kindly proofread something for my own good? Your behavior is unacceptable; leave now.”
     Being obliged to obey his guru, Jiva Gosvami left Vrndavana. He went to the village of Bhayagaon to live in a cave infested with crocodiles. There, for some days, he remained in the cave doing bhajana and crying, feeling bereft of his guru’s affection. He stopped eating and taking water, and within a short time he became emaciated. After some time, Sanatana Gosvami happened to visit that village as he was wandering around Vraja. The local people said to him, “Baba, we always considered you to be a great bhajananandi (one who is absorbed in bhajana), but a young boy who is even more of a bhajananandi than you has come to our village. Day and night he calls out the names of Radha-Krsna and weeps. We take him food but he refuses it, and he never sleeps either. Day and night he remains immersed in bhajana; we have never seen anything like it.”
     Srila Sanatana Gosvami could understand that this was Jiva, and immediately went to him. Reunited, they both wept. Sanatana Gosvami then took him back to Vrndavana, where he said to Rupa Gosvami, “The duty of Vaisnavas is to be compassionate to others, yet you renounced this young disciple of yours who is adorned with so many extraordinary qualities. You should be merciful to Jiva, but instead you banished him. This was a mistake and you should correct it. I am ordering you to quickly call him back.”
     Hearing this, Rupa Gosvami began crying for Jiva, whom he loved so much. When Sanatana Gosvami brought Jiva there and placed him in the lap of Rupa Gosvami, both guru and disciple wept. Rupa Gosvami arranged for Jiva to be treated by the best doctors from Mathura, and gradually Jiva became strong again. From then on, their former practice resumed with Rupa Gosvami giving whatever he wrote to Jiva to proofread.
     Later, Srila Jiva Gosvami expanded upon and enhanced the writing of other acaryas. One such acarya, Srila Gopala Bhatta Gosvami, had heard hari-katha directly from Srila Rupa and Sanatana Gosvamis, who he considered to be his siksa-gurus. While studying the writings of ancient Vaisnava acaryas such as Madhva and Ramanuja, Gopala Bhatta Gosvami selected different points in relation to sambandha (establishing one’s relationship with Krsna), abhidheya (acting in the dealings of that relationship), and prayojana (achieving life’s ultimate goal), and compiled everything in a notebook.
     Srila Jiva Gosvami learned all of this tattva from Gopala Bhatta Gosvami. Then, he took the volume which contained all the information on sambandha and enlarged it. He also took from the conceptions given in Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, Ujjvala-nilamani, Brhad-bhagavatamrta, and the other books composed by Rupa and Sanatana Gosvamis, and composed the first sandarbha.
   The word sandarbha means ‘a chest of valuable jewels.’ Of the Six Sandarbhas, the first four – Tattva-sandarbha, Bhagavat-sandarbha, Paramatma-sandarbha, and Krsna-sandarbha – all expound sambandha-jnana. They include knowledge of the jiva, the illusory energy, and the objective of the jiva; all of this was explained in the first four sandarbhas.
     In the Tattva-sandarbha, the conception of pramana (the body of evidence) and prameya (evidence) is given. What is the meaning of pramana? In any issue, whose words will we accept as authoritative? Suppose a young boy reports that a large fire has ravaged a holy place and everything has been burned. An elderly gentleman, however, reports that a small fire started in a tea shop there, but was easily contained. From these conflicting stories, whose words will we accept as authoritative? Certainly, the man’s words are more authoritative because he is older and more mature than the boy.
     This conception of pramana relates to many things. Different people may assert their beliefs that this world is real, their status as human beings or brahmanas is real, or that they are masters of their property. All this false identification and proprietorship causes so much fighting and quarreling. Another man will say, “These things are all temporary, so do not bother fighting over them. Instead, do something for your soul and for the Supreme Personality of Godhead; they are permanent.” Which of these two opinions will we accept? Analyzing the relationships between the Supreme Lord, the jiva, and material existence, Srila Jiva Gosvami explained where we should place our faith. He wrote that the Vedas are the sole authority, and that any other, so-called authority lacks credibility. That which we perceive with our limited senses and mind may be defective, but the words of the Vedas cannot be so.
     In his Bhagavat-sandarbha, Srila Jiva Gosvami writes that everything we see has the same source. The Absolute Truth is one, and He is naturally endowed with inconceivable potency. By the power of this potency, He exists within four forms: svarupa (His original form), tad-rupa-vaibhava (all incarnations, beginning with Baladeva Prabhu), jiva (the living entity), and pradhana (the illusory energy). He is like the sun which also exists in four forms: its original form, the sun disc, its rays, and its reflected light which is compared to maya.
     Jiva Gosvami took parts from Brahma-sandarbha and wrote his own Bhagavat-sandarbha, in which he analyzes brahma-tattva (the established truth about the Supreme Spirit Whole) and refutes the opinions of Sankaracarya. The jiva is not brahma (an impersonal God). If brahma is the Absolute Truth, which is full in knowledge as some say, then how did it separate into billions of living entities and become bound within material existence? Sankaracarya states that it was covered over by maya, but then where did this separate entity he calls maya come from? If there is no separate entity known as maya and all is the one brahma, where could this other object known as ignorance have come from? Refuting all of Sankaracarya’s concepts, Srila Jiva Gosvami proved that Krsna is Parabrahma, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the source of brahma.
     He also analyzed paramatma-tattva, and in the Krsna-sandarbha he explained how Krsna alone is the original Personality of Godhead. He explained how Krsna is all-powerful (sarva-saktiman), how He is an ocean of rasa, how from Him the jivas and all else emerge, and how the jivas can achieve His eternal association. He refuted the concept that Krsna is an incarnation of Narayana. Using evidence from the Vedas, Upanisads, and Puranas, he established that Krsna is the original Absolute Truth, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and that all other incarnations are His plenary or partial expansions. On the basis of scriptural evidence, he reinforced Mahaprabhu’s conception, which had been established in the literatures of Rupa Gosvami and Sanatana Gosvami. In doing so, he established our sampradaya upon a firm philosophical foundation. He protected the flowing river of rasa by placing large rocks of siddhanta on both its banks; in that way no contaminated water of misconceptions could ever enter it.
     In his Bhakti-sandarbha, he explained many subtle aspects of bhakti. He delineated the sixty-four types of bhakti, and he expertly explained guru-tattva. He also described guru-padasraya, the process of taking exclusive shelter of the guru, how it should be done, what are its rules and regulations, and so on. If the guru carefully evaluates the prospective disciple and the disciple carefully considers the guru, then a circumstance will never arise where the disciple will have to abandon his guru. He taught that one should not accept a guru whimsically; one should accept a guru in whom he will never lose faith, otherwise there will be a problem. One should make sure that he only accepts a sad-guru, who is detached from sense enjoyment, who is conversant with all tattva and siddhanta, who is rasika, who is spiritually realized, and who is affectionate towards him. One should examine the guru carefully, even if this process takes as long as a year,
     Srila Jiva Gosvami also explained that all bhakti is not the same, just as all varieties of water are not one and the same – there is clean water, purified water, contaminated water, sewage water, and so forth. Jiva Gosvami examined all these issues in depth in his sandarbhas, which one must read in order to understand the true nature of bhakti. Thus, by regularly hearing the knowledge delineated in these books and by associating with advanced Vaisnavas, one’s bhakti will gradually become uttama-bhakti. Srila Jiva Gosvami described at length the five types of prema (santa (neutrality), dasya (servitorship), sakhya (friendship), vatsalya (parental love), and madhurya (amorous love)), especially emphasizing gopi-prema and explaining the sadhana for achieving it. 
     Much of this came in his Gopala-campu, which is a very philosophical book. Srila Jiva Gosvami wrote that book in Goloka Vrndavana and then gave it to this world. He composed so many literatures that we could spend this entire birth immersed in reading them. Moreover, in practicing the sadhana prescribed by them, who knows how many lives we could spend?
If we endeavor to enter into these books, and if we examine both the personal conduct and conceptions of Jiva Gosvami and try to personally follow them, our spiritual lives will certainly be successful. May Srila Jiva Gosvami be merciful upon us so we can learn all the instructions he gave, in order to perform bhajana purely.




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